Lake Oconee Fishing Reports – January 2023

GON Staff | December 22, 2022

Oconee: Level: Full at 435. Temp: 55 degrees. Clarity: Mud from recent rainfall has moved all the way down to Cuscowilla.

Bass: Guide Norris Edge reports, “Bass fishing is very different on Oconee in January. Some fish will go after small crankbaits, ChatterBaits and even Little Georges, but you can also catch them deep on jigging spoons from 18 to 25 feet of water. But as always, you can catch them on boat docks and rip-rap using jigs and shaky-head worms. Mid lake seems to be the best right now. You can concentrate on the rip-rap throwing a crankbait around Great Waters and should get plenty of action.”

Lake Oconee Page: Archived Articles, News & Fishing Reports

Stripers: Capt. Doug Nelms with BigFishHeads Guide Service reports, “Happy New Year everyone, and even though this is the striper report, I have to start off by saying I’ve never seen such an active white bass bite as we are having on Oconee. It’s insane. I had two trips on the same day last month, and we put 129 white bass, stripers and hybrids into the boat, but the majority were white bass. It doesn’t seem like the mud is bothering them that much because when you find them now, normally it will only be white bass that you catch. The stripers and hybrids keep getting farther away from the mud and closer to the south end of the lake. The seagulls are now here in full force, and they are telling us where the bigger fish are. On most of my trips, I just start riding until I see the birds, and then we start fishing. Almost 100% of the time when you see birds, there will be bait and fish. I haven’t put a live bait on my boat in over a month because the artificial lures are doing such an awesome job. From jigging spoons to Sassy Shads and even striper flies under a popping cork is making guiding an easy life. On most of our half-day trips, we are putting no less than 30 fish in the boat. This upcoming full moon should make them absolutely crazy good. In my 20-plus years of guiding, I have seen a huge change in the moon phases for our stripers. Once upon a time, you couldn’t catch a fish on a full moon, it was the new moon that really got them going. However, now it is the complete opposite. I really have no wisdom as to why, but we really look forward to it these days. The mud has made its way to Cuscowilla and the stripers don’t like it, so they keep heading south. By the time you read this, it could be muddy all the way to Flagpole Point, which in a way is really good because it will bunch all the linesides up on the south end. That’s where we will spending most of our time this month. If you happen to see me out there, please pull up, introduce yourself and say hello. I’m always willing to share information and meet new friends.”

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